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2016-04-07

Asrock bios/uefi blues, and a fix.

I finally bought some stuff to upgrade my aging and somewhat slow computer but naturally that only created a decent headache. I bought an Asrock H-170M Pro4 motherboard and an i5-6500 CPU which had a combo offer of discounted memory, when the bits eventually arrived the setup was most unreliable, either not booting or dropping out after a short time. Bugger but I had noted that Asrock mention memory timing issues addressed on their bios updates so I tried their magical LAN update in the bios menu, well that was the end of things and the motherboard became as dead as Julius Caesar, bugger.
So onto eBay went Jimmy and ordered an honestly priced programmed bios chip replacement, then thinking of further issues ordered this cheap little programmer shown here, CH341A or whatever they call it, I'm glad I did.
The bios chip arrived without much delay except for the usual Australia Post way of doing it after a weekend, this brought the dead board back to life but with a MAC address problem for the ethernet that Asrock's Mac Tool program won't fix, possibly due to the board's newness, oh well at least I could set things up using wi-fi.
Today this little programmer arrived so Jimmy set to playing and had the usual trail of woe, if a person buys one of these then the artwork on it showing the chip mounting is correct, don't take any notice of the pretty artwork on the software that is downloaded, which I did and caused a deal of overheating and angst.
What you need to do is grab the 6 byte MAC address which is on a white patch on the edge of the motherboard, naturally it was way too small for me to read so I took a photo and printed the result in a size I could read.
Edit hex address of  #1000 and the next 5 with the proper MAC code and perhaps change the next 00 to 01 (not sure about that as my original dead chip had a 01 and I thought it may pay to copy it, which worked) and hopefully you board will no longer boot with an cmos error mismatch message, made me smile.
A downside for me is I only rarely get involved with problems like this rarely and have to relearn things as I go, I imagine the next time I need program something my hardware will be obsolete yet again.

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